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The Study Abroad Foundation (SAF)

SAF was established in 2000.  The organization currently works in 14 countries and maintains fully staffed offices in the United States, Mainland China, Japan and Korea. Part-time Student Liaison Officers (SLOs) provide student support and emergency services in locations where SAF does not currently maintain a full-time presence. 
SAF Headquarters Leadership and Staff

Board Chairperson

Mary M. Dwyer, Ph.D., is president and CEO of IES Abroad, the Institute for the International Education of Students, one of the nation's oldest, largest and most reputable not-for-profit organizations providing study abroad and internship programs to U.S. college and university students. Prior to IES Abroad, Dr. Dwyer was a faculty member in the College of Medicine at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) for 18 years and the campus Executive Associate Vice Chancellor for Research.Dr. Dwyer has consulted extensively over the past 25 years and been called upon by an array of U.S. and international organizations across 20 developed and emerging countries, including the World Health Organization (WHO), global ministries of health and education, Kellogg Foundation and national health and professional associations.  Dr. Dwyer holds a Bachelor of Arts in English and social sciences from Mundelein College, a master’s degree in educational leadership, a doctorate in public policy analysis from the University of Illinois at Chicago, and an honorary doctorate in Civil Law from the University of the South – Sewanee.

Executive Director 

Carol Carmody is a founding director of the Study Abroad Foundation. Carol began her career in international education in 1989 joining the newly established Institute for Study Abroad at Butler University (IFSA-Butler). In addition to facilitating study abroad programs for American undergraduate students, Carol has experience with English language programs, international student recruitment, and US immigration regulations through her work with the American Cultural Exchange, Butler University, and Ball State University . She is a graduate of Colorado State University and the University of Edinburgh, Scotland (M.Sc.) and studied abroad in Austria and Germany while an undergraduate student through IES Abroad.

Accounting Manager

Ron Hungerford holds a Bachelor of Science in Accounting from Indiana University. Prior to joining SAF, he performed multiple financial management roles for healthcare, service and retail-based private and publically traded companies and as a city comptroller. Ron looks forward to supporting SAF with his financial management expertise.

Assistant Director, Program Management 

Melissa Trahyn began her work at SAF in February 2010. Prior to joining SAF, Melissa was at Butler University in the International Student Services Office and before that the American Language Academy. Melissa first began traveling while in university, where her first trip was to Tirana, Albania; she has traveled and lived extensively in Eastern Europe and Central Asia. She first ventured out in international education to teach English in Baku, Azerbaijan at the International Learning Center (ILC) for one year right after graduating from university, then one year of teaching ESL and Music at the International School of Indiana. Melissa holds a Bachelor of Music Education degree from The Ohio State University and a MS in Effective Teaching and Leadership with a focus in Instructional Technology from Butler University. She is fluent in Spanish and has studied Azerbaijani and Russian.

Communications Manager

Erika Woodward, a native Marylander, joined SAF after spending three+ years in Tokyo crafting marketing communications as assistant editor for Tokyo American Club. Erika earned a Master of Journalism from the University of Maryland, and covered education as a statehouse correspondent in Annapolis. Her first international assignment took her to Iceland, where she covered the birth of a new political faction during a historic election. When she's not working on the latest project, the former professional ballerina hits the studio to unwind.

Program Advisors

Chelly Venegas, born and raised in Southern California, earned her Bachelor of International Studies from the University of California, Irvine, where, after graduation, she joined the International Programs Office at UCI Extension. Fluent in Spanish, Chelly has taught English in Santiago, Chile. She is delighted to continue working in support of internati onal education.

Laura Izzo received her BA in Spanish from Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas, and a Masters in Teaching English as a Second Language from the University of Texas at San Antonio. Laura worked for Tulsa City-County Library and a law firm prior to joining SAF, where she enjoys helping students pursue their study abroad goals.

Michael Timm is a graduate of Ball State University with a B.A. in Teaching Foreign Languages specializing in Japanese.  He spent one year in Tokyo at Tokyo Gakugei University.  He comes to IES from the Indianapolis Public School system where he has been teaching Japanese since 2015.

Grady Foster is a graduate of Florida State University, with a B.S. in Political Science, and Instituto Franklin – Universidad de Alcala (Spain), with a Master in International Education. Most recently, he has held several English teaching positions in Madrid, Spain.  In addition, he has had two internships in NGO/Non-profit settings as a social media intern both in the US and Peru.

Program Management Assistants

Jessica Hoag is a graduate of Penn State University with a B.A. in Global Studies, minor in Business. During her undergraduate studies, Jessica held many leadership positions, from the First Woman Student Government President, to co-founding the Chinese Culture Club.  She also worked in the Multicultural and International Office at Penn State Berks and was an International Mentor.  Jessica is an IES Alum of the 2016 Freiburg program.

Dennis Sullivan is a graduate of Ball State University with a B.A. in Communications, and Ruhr-Universität Bochum (Germany) and Rijksuniversiteit Groningen (Netherlands) with a dual M.A. degree in International Humanitarian Action. He has served in several support administrative positions in the Indiana State Senate, worked as an economic development trainer with Acción Contra el Hambre (Action against Hunger) in Tblisi, Georgia, and most recently as a member of the Disaster Action Team with the American Red Cross Society in Indianapolis.

Student Accounts Bookkeeper

Pam Shannon joined SAF in February 2013. She was previously employed by J.C. Penney Co. and has a background in bookkeeping. Pam has lived in Japan where she was a bookkeeper for OMS International and taught conversational English. Pam is responsible for preparing student invoices and receiving payments, along with other duties that may arise with student accounts.

 

 

 

 

   
Last Updated: 10/2/17